Images of America -

Analyzing Music Videos: The Assignment

Integrated U. S. History and American Literature Class
Deborah Aufdenspring and Sandra Mings-Lamar

New Technology High School, Napa, CA

(Quick Links to related pages)



Overview: Analyze images for historical/cultural significance

What does the video say about the United States? (purpose)

What four or five specific images support that view? (supporting artistic details)

What has research shown you about the historical background of the video's images?

Is the video historically/culturally accurate? How do you know that? (Historical research is your evidence.)

Does your group agree with the focus or theme of the video? Explain

Group Work: Your group will:

Select a video you can all agree on

Present your analysis to the class using the above overview as a guide. You should go beyond the question and answer format to make a presentation that engages your viewers, uses visual material and explains both the video and your research.

Group Roles:

1. Organizer, scheduler and chief researcher

Makes sure all tasks are done on time

Has primary responsibility for organizing group members to do research, which may take place on-line with the Internet and Bookshelf Encyclopedia, and at the college library, or public library, or libraries at Napa, Vintage, or Sonoma State.

2. Discussion moderator and note-taker

Makes sure all students contribute and are heard

Records discussion notes and distributes them daily to group members

3. Writer/Producer for presentation

Puts together the pieces of the presentation made to the class

Makes certain that all group members participate in the presentation

4. Main Presenter

The "star" of the presentation

Has secondary responsibility for organizing and conducting research

5. Technician

Manages equipment, making sure the group uses equipment only for allotted time

E-mails presentation outline to entire class after getting an OK from instructors

Gets permission to use a video different from those brought by instructor if group wants to use own video

Note: All students in a group should participate in all aspects of the presentation. All students are responsible for research. No one group member is ìfinishedî with his/her job until all group members are finished with the work of the group.

Individual Work:

In addition to the work of the group, each student will write an individual analysis of the video the group analyzed, or, if s/he prefers, an analysis of a different video.

Quick Links

Introduction - Analyzing Music Videos
Music Video Assignment
Analysis Tips
Comparing and Contrasting Music Videos
Grading Rubric

Stills of Sample Videos, with Sample Analysis Questions:
Billy Joel.....Erykah Badu.....Pop up Videos.....Tracy Lawrence

Rage Against the Machine.....Vince Gill.....Van Halen.....Aqua.....12 other videos

For Teachers...

For examples of recent student projects on analyzing music videos:
Student Work

E-mail me.

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